Monthly Passenger Bus and Urban Transit Survey (MLUT)

Detailed information for December 2016





Record number:


This survey collects data essential for the statistical analysis of the passenger bus and urban transit industry and its impact on the Canadian economy.

Data release - February 24, 2017


This survey collects gross revenue and passenger trip data from 10 urban transit companies across Canada. These companies represent approximately 80% of urban transit activity revenues across Canada. These data are intended as a leading indicator of trends in the urban transit sector and are one input to monthly GDP estimates. Aggregate data are available. The survey includes 3 scheduled intercity carriers, but as a result of confidentiality, these data are not made available.

Statistical activity

This statistical activity is part of a set of surveys measuring various aspects of activities related to movement of people and goods. These surveys are grouped as follows:

Transportation by air includes records related to the movement of aircraft, passengers and cargo by air for both Canadian and foreign air carriers operating in Canada as well as the financial and operating characteristics of Canadian air carriers. These data are produced by the Aviation Statistics Centre.

Transportation by rail includes records relating to rail transportation in Canada and between the United States and Canada.

Transportation by road includes records relating to all road transport in Canada. In addition to surveying carriers and owners of registered motor vehicles, certain programs rely on aggregation of provincial and territorial administrative records.

Water Transport includes records relating to water transportation, domestic shipping, international seaborne shipping, and ports of loading and unloading.

Collection period: During the month following the reference month.


  • Transportation
  • Transportation by road

Data sources and methodology

Target population

The survey covers the operations of establishments earning gross annual total operating revenue (excluding subsidies) of $1,000,000 or more annually from urban transit operations. An establishment is defined as the smallest reporting unit capable of reporting all elements of basic industrial statistics.

Instrument design

Ten of Canada's largest urban transit properties and three major scheduled intercity bus companies provide a single monthly gross revenue figure as well as a single value for passengers carried. The same respondents are surveyed every month to ensure consistency of the data that are used as an indicator only. There are no national estimates prepared from these data. The sample chosen is not random.


This is a sample survey with a cross-sectional design.

The unit of observation is the company as opposed to the statistical establishment or enterprise. The companies have been preselected on the basis of revenue.

Data sources

Responding to this survey is mandatory.

Data are collected directly from survey respondents.

Each month, the 13 companies provide the data. Follow-up is carried out by email, telephone and fax.

View the Questionnaire(s) and reporting guide(s) .

Error detection

Basic analysis (e.g. percentage change) is used to ensure that there are no significant changes month to month. When a significant change occurs, follow-up is undertaken to check the data (for example, in urban transit, significant change may be a result of a labour action or other similar reasons). Seasonal variations are expected (e.g. a fall peak for urban transit).


Companies are asked to provide data for missing months. Until those data are provided, imputation is performed based on historical data.


No estimates on a national basis are prepared.

Quality evaluation

The data are checked for reasonableness over time and on a month to month basis, with checks to see if seasonal patterns are consistent on a year to year basis.

Disclosure control

Statistics Canada is prohibited by law from releasing any information it collects which could identify any person, company, or organization, unless consent has been given by the respondent or as permitted by the Statistics Act. Various confidentiality rules are applied to all data that are released or published to prevent the publication or disclosure of any information deemed confidential. If necessary, data are suppressed to prevent direct or residual disclosure of identifiable data.

Revisions and seasonal adjustment

Estimates are provided for the reference month and the previous 12 months are revised if necessary. The data are not seasonally adjusted.

Data accuracy

There are no quality measures other than checking for large variations on a month to month basis. Users are warned that the survey is not based on a statistical sampling methodology nor are the data adjusted for response errors.

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